Mary A. Mitchell biography

Mary A. Mitchell is an editorial board member and columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times. She is a recipient of numerous journalism awards, including the prestigious …

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A little from you means a lot to needy children

Growing up, my siblings and I almost never got what we asked for on Christmas. We asked for bikes. We got skates. But on Christmas Day, we played with whatever was under our tree with enthusiasm. When we were adults, we understood how difficult it was for our parents to fulfill the Christmas dreams of their 10 children without some real magic.

Mitchell: In fatal incidents, black police officers don’t receive same benefit of the doubt

I like to think we’ve come a long way from the days when a black man could get arrested for spitting on the sidewalk. And from the days when there were two sets of laws: one for whites and another for blacks. But a Justice …

New York case reinforces black distrust of police: Mitchell

The video showing several New York police officers wrestling Eric Garner to the ground, one of them with an arm around his neck spoke for itself. Yet in the face of that shocking visual, on Wednesday a Staten Island grand jury voted not to bring criminal charges against the New York City police officer behind the chokehold.

Ferguson is a revolutionary’s dream

Chicago Police don’t play. There are too many instances of Chicagoans getting their heads cracked because they didn’t follow a police order. In fact, in poor communities, the lucrative settlements the city has to pay out because of police abuse have become an unofficial lottery. But in Ferguson, Mo. last week, anger over a grand jury decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson for the fatal shooting of unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown exploded into burning and looting.

Ex-aide feels immune from Jackson’s 7th Ward cloud

One of the most intriguing aldermanic races will be in the South Side’s 7th Ward. That race will pit Ald. Natashia Holmes, whom Mayor Rahm Emanuel picked to replace Sandi Jackson, against Keiana Barrett, Jackson’s former chief of staff. Sandi Jackson was convicted of income …

Charity event looks like turkey tokenism

Mary Mitchell: During the holiday season, a lot of churches will hand out turkeys along with several ingredients for a festive dinner. Feeding the hungry is a sacred task and a demonstration of Christian faith. But charity shouldn’t be mixed with politics.

After all the protests, reaction to Michael Brown shooting boils down to trust

The worst part of the Michael Brown police involved shooting was the waiting: Waiting for his dead body to be removed from the street. Waiting for his devastated parents to express their anguish. Waiting for the authorities to identify Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson as …

Words of warning from man serving life

Jesse Webster has had a lot of time to think. In 1996, the South Side man was sentenced to life in prison for a non-violent drug offense. Webster has already served nearly two decades behind bars.

Don’t dismiss Cosby’s accusers: Mitchell

It makes little sense that some of us are blaming the victims accusing comedian Bill Cosby of sexual assault. Understandably, it was difficult to reconcile the wholesome, TV super-dad as an alleged sexual predator. But many of us were quick to condemn the entire Catholic …

Mitchell: Byrne moved us all in the right direction

In the end, Chicago did right by former Mayor Jane Byrne, the city’s only female mayor. In August, the exasperating Circle Interchange and the park around the Water Tower in the heart of Chicago’s Mag Mile were renamed in her honor. That’s not bad for someone whose legacy might as well have been buried in a time capsule.

Mitchell: Joliet case illustrates sentencing unfairness

They were dubbed the Hickory Street murderers. Four youths — the oldest not yet 30 — charged with luring Eric Glover, 22, and Terrence Rankins, 22, to their deaths in order to rob them of money to pay for cigarettes, liquor and gas. As if …

White House works to improve the lives of women of color

The White House Council on Women and Girls, chaired by Senior Adviser Valerie Jarrett, offered up a testament on Wednesday of how well women of color have prospered under President Barack Obama’s administration.

Meeks’ persistence, passion admirable

I have to give it to the Rev. James Meeks. The former state senator is persistent. Meeks, whom Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner appointed to his transition team on Thursday, has a passion for education.

Quinn’s loss can’t be laid on the doorstep of African-American community

I ran into my 92-year-old neighbor on Tuesday and asked her if she had voted. “Yes,” she answered, squinting at me. “I held my nose, but I voted.” Her gesture aptly describes what went wrong for Gov. Pat Quinn in his loss to Republican businessman …

Past sacrifices aren’t the only reason to vote

I still vote the old-fashioned way. I could have voted early, but I like the challenge of getting to the polls on Election Day. When I was raising a family, a child’s unexpected temperature could keep me from getting out the house or I miscalculated …

Church, politics are old companions

Needless to say, I got a lot of grief for suggesting preachers should keep politics out of the pulpit.

Plan to keep Dyett open — for now — isn’t a clear victory: Mitchell

Jitu Brown, of Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (“KOCO”), and a coalition of community groups, demonstrated what it takes to move the powers-that-be.